(Thumbnail image: Cagle Cartoons, Inc.)

 

"The murder of 11 Israeli coaches and athletes by Palestinian militants at the 1972 Munich games has hung over every Olympics since." (CNN)

 

With the 2010 Winter Olympics less than two weeks away, the Canadian government has been tightening security.  Canada has already spent 1.05 billion dollars on security, making the Olympics the biggest domestic security operation in Canadian history.

 

We're looking at reports and analysis from CBC, CNN, News1130, and The Vancouver Sun.

 

Among the games' security measures are 1,000 video surveillance cameras, 15,500 security officers, security checkpoints, and safety fences. CBC News reports that while the measures are causing some "annoyance and confusion" in the city, officials will try to keep the impact on non-Olympic travelers to a minimum.

 

"If you're not attending a 2010 game event, you will likely not experience any security restrictions, promising there will not be any random security checks in any of the host municipalities.  But if you're a ticketholder attending an Olympic event, you will be required to pass through a security screening - expect long lineups." 

 

But despite the influx of manpower to help keep Vancouver safe, CNN points out that the geographic scope of the games presents complex difficulties.  Besides Vancouver, security officials will also have to worry about events held in the resort town of Whistler.

 

Pile: "Our soldiers are deployed up there with snowmobiles, track vehicles, foot patrols, snowshoe, skis."

 

Meserve: "Connecting the two venues, just one critical road, much of which hugs the coast. It too will be heavily patrolled.  There will be air restrictions policed by NORAD, the North American Aerospace Defense Command, and 4500 members of the Canadian armed forces with special skills and equipment are in reserve if needed."

 

News 1130 looked at the perspective of civil rights issues surrounding the video surveillance in Vancouver, which has brought the Canadian government some criticism.  According to a report from News1130, the promise that they are temporary is the only thing keeping civil rights and privacy activists at bay.

 

"The unprecedented deployment of electronic surveillance makes privacy watchdogs nervous and they've sought assurances from the authorities the networks will be dismantled as soon as the Games are over... Any recordings from the cameras can only be kept for a limited time unless they're used as evidence in a court case."

 

Many sources say the Canadian police's biggest concern will most likely be domestic political protesters.  One protester delivered an ominous comment to The Vancouver Sun.

 

"As to whether she's hoping a disruption of traffic heading to BC Place might affect the opening ceremony, set to be watched by millions of people around the world, Westergard-Thorpe said: 'Absolutely, I would love to disrupt the opening ceremony.'"

 

Whether they're is ready or not, the 2010 Winter Olympic Games are slated to begin February 12 in Vancouver.

 

Writer: Tracy Pfieffer

Producer: Liz Reed

Winter Olympics: Canada's Biggest Security Operation

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Feb 3, 2010

Winter Olympics: Canada's Biggest Security Operation

(Thumbnail image: Cagle Cartoons, Inc.)

 

"The murder of 11 Israeli coaches and athletes by Palestinian militants at the 1972 Munich games has hung over every Olympics since." (CNN)

 

With the 2010 Winter Olympics less than two weeks away, the Canadian government has been tightening security.  Canada has already spent 1.05 billion dollars on security, making the Olympics the biggest domestic security operation in Canadian history.

 

We're looking at reports and analysis from CBC, CNN, News1130, and The Vancouver Sun.

 

Among the games' security measures are 1,000 video surveillance cameras, 15,500 security officers, security checkpoints, and safety fences. CBC News reports that while the measures are causing some "annoyance and confusion" in the city, officials will try to keep the impact on non-Olympic travelers to a minimum.

 

"If you're not attending a 2010 game event, you will likely not experience any security restrictions, promising there will not be any random security checks in any of the host municipalities.  But if you're a ticketholder attending an Olympic event, you will be required to pass through a security screening - expect long lineups." 

 

But despite the influx of manpower to help keep Vancouver safe, CNN points out that the geographic scope of the games presents complex difficulties.  Besides Vancouver, security officials will also have to worry about events held in the resort town of Whistler.

 

Pile: "Our soldiers are deployed up there with snowmobiles, track vehicles, foot patrols, snowshoe, skis."

 

Meserve: "Connecting the two venues, just one critical road, much of which hugs the coast. It too will be heavily patrolled.  There will be air restrictions policed by NORAD, the North American Aerospace Defense Command, and 4500 members of the Canadian armed forces with special skills and equipment are in reserve if needed."

 

News 1130 looked at the perspective of civil rights issues surrounding the video surveillance in Vancouver, which has brought the Canadian government some criticism.  According to a report from News1130, the promise that they are temporary is the only thing keeping civil rights and privacy activists at bay.

 

"The unprecedented deployment of electronic surveillance makes privacy watchdogs nervous and they've sought assurances from the authorities the networks will be dismantled as soon as the Games are over... Any recordings from the cameras can only be kept for a limited time unless they're used as evidence in a court case."

 

Many sources say the Canadian police's biggest concern will most likely be domestic political protesters.  One protester delivered an ominous comment to The Vancouver Sun.

 

"As to whether she's hoping a disruption of traffic heading to BC Place might affect the opening ceremony, set to be watched by millions of people around the world, Westergard-Thorpe said: 'Absolutely, I would love to disrupt the opening ceremony.'"

 

Whether they're is ready or not, the 2010 Winter Olympic Games are slated to begin February 12 in Vancouver.

 

Writer: Tracy Pfieffer

Producer: Liz Reed

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